Press Releases

Washington—Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today applauded the Labor Department for implementing changes to how federal firefighters file claims for occupational illnesses and increasing transparency in that process.

The Labor Department announced a new claims process for illnesses including certain cancers, heart disease and lung disease. The new process will ease requirements to support claims related to fire protection and suppression work.

Senator Feinstein in February led a letter to the Labor Department to expedite firefighter compensation claims.

“The new Labor Department process to handle wildland firefighter claims is an important step to help support these individuals who protect our communities,” Feinstein said.

“This is especially important as wildfires in the West are becoming larger and more frequent. Federal firefighters will be engaged for longer periods of time each year fighting increasingly dangerous fires, and as a result firefighters will be more likely to sustain work-related injuries and be exposed to conditions that can lead to long-term illness.

“Handling claims in an expedited manner and recognizing the unique dangers faced by federal firefighters is just common sense, and I thank the Labor Department for taking these steps.”

Additional information on changes to the claims process can be found here.